As seen on BlackDoctor.org
I’m too tired.” “It’s too cold.” “I have no time to spare.” “The gym is too far.” “I don’t own any workout clothes.”
Sound familiar? They’re all common excuses as to why we won’t commit to starting a new workout routine. We all fall victim to our excuses from time to time, and while some excuses may be valid, they should never keep us from executing a goal we established back in January 2009. It’s a new year and the perfect time to step into a new mindset. We can overcome our excuses and finally make it through those gym doors, even if that means hacking our way there.
The first step is to set a goal. By setting goals, we’re able to intentionally move through our fitness journeys, which is especially important when mapping out our workouts, maximizing our gym time, creating a realistic timeline and ultimately seeing results. Goals should be SMART, meaning they should be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. When listing our goals we must be clear and practical and we must be able to track our progress on a timeline.
Once we’ve set our goals it’s time to decide on a plan of action! What fitness formats will we choose to be part of our routine? How many days of the week will we work out? How much time are we willing to spend in the gym? It’s important, to be honest with ourselves. We’re less likely to fall short and let ourselves down if we commit to a realistic number of days. If we decide on formats that we truly enjoy, we’ll give ourselves something to look forward to those three or four active days of the week. This will also help eliminate some of the confusion surrounding our new fitness routine because we already know what to expect from ourselves and our workout before we even start.
Another great motivation hack is choosing an accountability partner. Perhaps you know someone who desires a healthier lifestyle or maybe you know someone who’s already submerged. Either way, it’s nice to have someone to hold us accountable for executing our fitness plans. A good accountability partner is also going to be there for us when we’re frustrated and ready to give up. They’ll help keep us motivated and push us to fight for our goals.
It sounds vain, but you may notice you’re more enthusiastic about showing up for your sweat sessions if you do it in workout gear you actually like, and as long as you know where to look, it doesn’t have to be costly. Purchasing activewear that looks good and fits even better will inspire you to get moving if only to show off your new coordinates. Hey, at least you accomplished the hardest part, which is showing up!
Finally, don’t be afraid to treat yourself! It’s not a bad idea to have a system in place that rewards when milestones are met. Frozen yogurt, a bubble bath, a massage or facial, even a new (gym) bag are great ways to honor yourself for successfully executing your plans. Initiating a healthy lifestyle is challenging and following through takes the cake so celebrate your wins each time you’ve hit your mark!